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#1 of 19 Old 03-17-2010, 02:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So, my daughter doesn't read all night long - she'd love too, I am sure.

Instead, she reads at school. All. The. Time.

Since dd was identified as potentially having Aspergers Syndrome by the school psychologist, I have been reading the book Misdiagnosis And Dual Diagnoses Of Gifted Children And Adults: Adhd, Bipolar, Ocd, Asperger's, Depression, And Other Disorders by James Webb. It so describes my girl. In talking about differentiating between problematic behavours due a true diagnosis or whether it is just due to normal giftedness. One problem he describes is when there is a mismatch between the gifted person and the environment (like school).
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For example, consider the child who refuses to do rote work and insists upon reading her preferred books all day, or the child who refuses to go to school at all. This child's behaviour may be seen as oppositional or indicative of another behavioral disorder...
He goes on to talk about these kids and their attempts to fit into and meet expectation and how that can lead to more frustration and anger and even depression.

I don't know exactly what I am looking for in posting this. We are trying all kinds of things to get her to stay on task and just do the work. She does have ADHD (and THAT I am pretty sure is a correct diagnosis), so that is a factor, but a lot of it is just her flat-out refusing to do the boring, rote work of school. She is in a GATE class already. She has never, ever liked school (except for her friends) and now she is headed that direction again - I can see it. We are looking at all kinds of options.

My husband and I went to see a gifted counselor to discuss dd, and she calmed my fears about Aspergers and my daughter's potential to have it. We will still do the screening at some point, but I am not overwhelmed right now and it can wait a bit longer. She talked about taking different courses and programs and creating an individualized plan that fosters her areas of talent and keeps her involved. We are going to look at a school that uses a "constructivist" method of teaching (not sure what that means) that is a part-homeschool program as well as a private hybrid-homeschool program that is in another town in our county.

At this point - I just do not know what to do to get her to do her work at school. The work she does do is fine, even good, great...if she does it. And doesn't drive her teacher crazy in the meantime. I love her teacher, btw. She's awesome. And she tries.

Sigh. School stinks. Thoughts anyone?
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#2 of 19 Old 03-17-2010, 03:22 PM
 
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My DD is not on the spectrum and does not have ADHD. She read her way through her school days for 4 years. She completed all the work and had good grades. Early in grade 5 she decided she'd had enough and she's now in a school that meets her needs, with a teacher that stays on top of her and her needs. The reading was entirely related to the lack of fit of the school. She is a voracious reader and still reads all of the time, but not during class except when she's supposed to .

Have you had your DD's IQ tested? Maybe she just plain needs some grade skips. What I'm reading here about GATE indicates that in many areas it's targetting high ability kids, not necessarily gifted kids.

I know I always buck against doing uninspiring work, it makes sense that kids would too.

Mom to a teenager and a middle schooler.

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#3 of 19 Old 03-17-2010, 03:29 PM
 
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Being devil's advocate a touch- but WHY should she do the work?

I was one of those kids. Never really found much reason to do the work until college.

-Angela
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#4 of 19 Old 03-17-2010, 03:30 PM
 
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Crashing in.

I used to read while I walked. I mean, I'd be walking down the hallway at school reading, and I'd read before school, and I'd read after school, and I'd read at recess.

I also absolutely hated doing busy work. I remember actually getting a big fat ZERO on a mid-term report card in the 6th (luckily just a mid-term one, so it didn't officially count) because I had literally done NO work the entire semester. That's actually what the teacher's comments said, "Rhiannon has done no work this semester." But yet, in that same class, the teacher was saying things like, "Come on guys, you can read the chapters you're supposed to have read, Rhiannon finished this book months ago, so can you!" I'd read the book, but not done any of the busy work.

By the 8th grade it got bad because I had never learned any study skills because I'd never needed to study before. I was always the "she's smart but she doesn't apply herself" kid. By college things got difficult because I'd always managed to figure out some way to get through school without really doing work or studying.

It's definitely come back to bite me as an adult, as well. Look at me- typing this while I should be working.

Anyhow, I have no suggestions or anything. Just wanted to say that I totally get where your daughter is coming from (and I don't have Aspergers).

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#5 of 19 Old 03-17-2010, 05:32 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SkySunSea View Post
So, my daughter doesn't read all night long - she'd love too, I am sure.

Instead, she reads at school. All. The. Time.

Since dd was identified as potentially having Aspergers Syndrome by the school psychologist, I have been reading the book Misdiagnosis And Dual Diagnoses Of Gifted Children And Adults: Adhd, Bipolar, Ocd, Asperger's, Depression, And Other Disorders by James Webb. It so describes my girl. In talking about differentiating between problematic behavours due a true diagnosis or whether it is just due to normal giftedness. One problem he describes is when there is a mismatch between the gifted person and the environment (like school). He goes on to talk about these kids and their attempts to fit into and meet expectation and how that can lead to more frustration and anger and even depression.

I don't know exactly what I am looking for in posting this. We are trying all kinds of things to get her to stay on task and just do the work. She does have ADHD (and THAT I am pretty sure is a correct diagnosis), so that is a factor, but a lot of it is just her flat-out refusing to do the boring, rote work of school. She is in a GATE class already. She has never, ever liked school (except for her friends) and now she is headed that direction again - I can see it. We are looking at all kinds of options.

My husband and I went to see a gifted counselor to discuss dd, and she calmed my fears about Aspergers and my daughter's potential to have it. We will still do the screening at some point, but I am not overwhelmed right now and it can wait a bit longer. She talked about taking different courses and programs and creating an individualized plan that fosters her areas of talent and keeps her involved. We are going to look at a school that uses a "constructivist" method of teaching (not sure what that means) that is a part-homeschool program as well as a private hybrid-homeschool program that is in another town in our county.

At this point - I just do not know what to do to get her to do her work at school. The work she does do is fine, even good, great...if she does it. And doesn't drive her teacher crazy in the meantime. I love her teacher, btw. She's awesome. And she tries.

Sigh. School stinks. Thoughts anyone?
I think your DD and my son are twins! I got a note home the other day saying he was "reading too much and not doing work." Well.... um... yeah.

He goes to a Montessori school, where he can choose anything he wants to do. Some days he wants to read all day I don't know.

What page of Webb's book is that on??????? I'm reading that book now too, going through the same thing with the school...

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#6 of 19 Old 03-17-2010, 05:40 PM
 
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The last chapter of The Mislabeled Child is all about giftedness and goes through thinking styles and how they manifest/look in the real world. Very interesting.

Mom to a teenager and a middle schooler.

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#7 of 19 Old 03-17-2010, 05:50 PM
 
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I am a certified regular ed and special ed elementary teacher... but haven't had my own classroom yet.
I was a teacher's assistant for a K class last year for about 10 weeks (after the previous assistant quit unexpectedly) at a private all girls school.
There was one K'er who read almost all of the time. She would take herself away from the group, find a book, and read. This had been an "issue" for the school the entire year and she wasn't "invited" back the following year. This is a girl that was reading at a 5th grade level, at the minimum.
My thought was always: who cares?!!? Let her read! This is awesome and she's learning so much in such a self-directed way. I know it's hard as a classroom teacher because how do you cater to all members of the classroom when one (or more) is not following the routine. But again, if she's reading and being self directed (and certainly not disturbing the other students), why discourage that?
So sorry because that's probably not helpful... just throwing out my .02 as a future classroom teacher

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#8 of 19 Old 03-17-2010, 05:51 PM
 
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Originally Posted by rhiOrion View Post
I used to read while I walked. I mean, I'd be walking down the hallway at school reading, and I'd read before school, and I'd read after school, and I'd read at recess.
LOL! That was me, too.

For me, it was a combination of not being stimulated by the work I was being asked to do in class and, possibly more importantly, not having any friends, so I preferred to escape to a world with characters I could relate to.

It sounds like your DD does have friends, but I would check in with her to see if there is a change there. If there is a way to focus her school work on her areas of interest and more at her talent level, I would work on trying to get that implemented first.

Kate
mother of Patrick (7/31/03), and Michael, William, and Jocelyn (4/27/07)
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#9 of 19 Old 03-17-2010, 05:56 PM
 
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I've got to add that with my son, it is a form of escapism. He is wrestling with some heavy perfectionism.... and reading is easy for him. So he can avoid challenging work by reading (which is easy and has no challenge). We're working on it, but I just wanted to toss this out there-- reading all day doesn't mean the work is always too easy.

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#10 of 19 Old 03-17-2010, 06:27 PM
 
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No advice really, just another "I was that kid too."

I hated elementary school because it was soooooo dull. I read all the time and got in trouble constantly. The worst was during english time, when the whole class was supposed to be following along in one of those big anthologies while a student read...slowly...painfully...from the page. I had that whole thing read by the second month of school and I only saw it once a day. The teacher would constant call on me to read because she could see I wasn't following along "correctly". So I figured out how to do both. Multitasking! But painful.

I also often refused to go to school and did very little work. My one reason for not going insane was the once a week gifted pull-out program. Not enough by far, but something. My 5th and 6th grade teachers thought it was crazy that I got to go to gifted when I had not finished my "real" work . Like answering worksheets about the color of someone's shirt in a book I finished two weeks prior.

But anyway...I wish that schools took giftedness as seriously as they took disabilities. They don't simply because a gifted kid is not going to hurt standardized NCLB test scores. Plus there is no money. As a teacher both of these reasons just piss me off.

Your kid obviously needs more challenging work.
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#11 of 19 Old 03-17-2010, 07:32 PM
 
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A constructivist approach means that you build on the prior knowledge of the student and develop learning from that prior knowledge. If your daughter is bored with school, the person you spoke with could be tapping in to the idea that your child has advanced beyond what her current educational setting is offering her and that she needs a more individualized plan for learning OR (this last idea MIGHT be a leap) that maybe she could even skip a grade (can you tell I have a PhD in education?)...
As for what setting is appropriate for her--it depends on where you live (if you are in the US) and what is available. I have posted on this board before about my dd's situation: my dd has been identified as gifted and attends a public gifted magnet elementary school where the children must be identified and then, for lack of a better term, offered an opportunity to attend.
This school really fits her quirky personality and frankly, there are times when I think she is border something. She makes a lot of repetitive hand motions throughout the day and has an unusual speech pattern--but all screening reveals nothing. So, she's a little OCD maybe, I don't know.
My question to you is: does her reading interfere with other aspects of her life? If so, then you would want to know why she is reading instead of participating in other life events--you may find that it is an avoidance behavior for something else...although you may alreayd know this yourself.
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#12 of 19 Old 03-17-2010, 11:34 PM
 
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I have been reading the book Misdiagnosis And Dual Diagnoses Of Gifted Children And Adults: Adhd, Bipolar, Ocd, Asperger's, Depression, And Other Disorders by James Webb. It so describes my girl. In talking about differentiating between problematic behavours due a true diagnosis or whether it is just due to normal giftedness. One problem he describes is when there is a mismatch between the gifted person and the environment (like school). He goes on to talk about these kids and their attempts to fit into and meet expectation and how that can lead to more frustration and anger and even depression.
This is what I worry about with my dd. While I believe there is a lot of benefit to kindergarten for her, she is really way above most of what they do there and some days she seems depressed and can't usually give me insight into what's bothering her.
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#13 of 19 Old 03-18-2010, 02:35 PM
 
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This is what I worry about with my dd. While I believe there is a lot of benefit to kindergarten for her, she is really way above most of what they do there and some days she seems depressed and can't usually give me insight into what's bothering her.
That makes me sad for you and your dd. I remember last year when you were worrying about kindie and I was hoping it would really work for your dd, although I wondered given how advanced she is.

Does she do any regular physical activity? I have found swimming really grounding for both kids. It doesn't fix the school issues but I think improves their mental health.

Mom to a teenager and a middle schooler.

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#14 of 19 Old 03-20-2010, 02:32 AM
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Dd does this, but she still manages good grades, so oh well?

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#15 of 19 Old 03-20-2010, 02:44 AM
 
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We had this issue with my dd as well. She was actually hiding her book in her desk and keeping the lid open about two inches so she could still see it. The teacher that year was horrible. We struck a deal with dd that if she did her work we would keep up with her endless supply of books at home (she also has a dx of ADD). Now at 16 she has learned to regulate better. She does read the whole time she is walking home from HS though. I have pulled to the side of the road to pick her up on many occasions and she has walked into my car!
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#16 of 19 Old 03-20-2010, 03:04 AM
 
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I was like this as a child. Not on the spectrum, though I do have some sensory issues. In fact, when I take college classes or even watch movies, I still do this. I can still pay attention to what's going on around me and take it all in, but I read all the time. i was in gifted classes, and had a couple friends who were the same way.

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#17 of 19 Old 03-21-2010, 01:18 AM
 
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I read all the time in school too. I even was given a special library pass to allow me to go read in the library before school started, and could go again at lunch to check out another book. In the third grade I read the entire Trixie Belden series 3 times, plus the Happy Hollister series and the Bobbsey Twins. I would go in the morning and start a book, read during class, read at lunch, then stop at the library to return that book and get a new one, which I would finish before school the next day. So two books a day, at least. And not only would I walk while reading, I even managed to ride my bike while reading! And yes, the whole "read aloud and follow along" thing was ridiculous. I do remember that I knew I shouldn't be reading in math class, but thought getting in trouble for reading ahead in Language Arts was the dumbest thing ever. Um..you are punishing me because I read well? My mom was really worried about me, that I wasn't socializing more, but A. I really did like reading that much, and B. kids can be mean. The ones in my book were more fun than the ones at my lunch table. However, they were still my friends, and I am in contact with them to this day. I wish everyone had not worried about me and had just let me read!!! This is one of the reasons I want to homeschool my son.
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#18 of 19 Old 03-22-2010, 11:51 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for all your replies. I am concerned about depression, because she has mentioned that too me - she really doesn't like school. She isn't active in any sports outside of school right now, she isn't much of a joiner, but we did just take her for a free scuba experience for her 10th birthday and that was a huge success. I think we may have found her a sport, even if it is a bit "extreme." We are divers also, so this is something we've been looking forward too. She also wants a skate board and inline skates - so that should be fun to get her into. She does need more physical activities.

As for reading, you know, we'll just take it as it comes. It sounds like many of you have turned out A-OK, so she will too. She's a cool kid. I'll just have to be patient. We are looking into another school that is more project-based and less teach-to-the-test as well as one that is geared more toward challenging kids with a focus on using the GATE curriculum in a modified home-school program. Catholic school wasn't for her...straight home-school wasn't for her...and the regular public school (even GATE) doesn't seem to be for her, so something has to happen.

As for why - I think it is (1) she gets bored (2) I do think she avoids things that do challenge her unless she has an inherent interest and (3) she does have ADHD (and is a KID)...so sitting in a class all day is so not fun.

Thanks again all.
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#19 of 19 Old 03-23-2010, 08:32 PM
 
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I started reading IN class when we go to Sacajawea in History. And they gave her 2 sentences. 2. I had read the book Sacajawea 2 years earlier (I think it is about 2000 pages). At that point, I knew that they weren't teaching me anything I hadn't already read or could read myself, and much faster.

My now dh and I played hangman during chemistry and Anat and Phys. The teacher never said a word.

If she were my kid, I would sit down with her and a sheet of paper. I would list out the pros and cons of all of her schooling options and let her help make the decision. I am about to do this with my 9 year old.

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